While I don’t hit the water all the time, some great memories I have involve being on boats with my family. We’re trying to have as many outdoor adventures as possible this summer and boating with kids is on our list of things to do!
This post is sponsored by Discover Boating but the content and opinions expressed here are my own.
I’m excited to share how we’re making boating part of our summer adventures even though we don’t own a boat!
Tips for Boating with Kids
Did you know that 142 million Americans (both adults and children) go boating each year? And 82% of Americans say that being around the water is relaxing.
I’m always looking for ways to spend time together and relax when we’re taking a break from our busy lives. Whether it’s a vacation or a staycation, my goal is for us all to have a good time and not feel the pressure of our usual everyday lives.
My kids love swimming and the beach so letting them experience boating only made sense! I have memories of spending time on my grandfather’s boat in Hot Springs, Arkansas as a child that will stick with me forever!
One of the last photos I took with my sister also happened to be out on the lake. So, yes I’ve got boating memories.
I’ll admit that as a mom I don’t have much experience with recreational boating and that’s why I haven’t gotten the kids out on the water as much I might have liked.
We live fairly close to a local lake though and I just can’t resist the pull of that gorgeous water!
Going boating with kids is actually really easy to do. There are a few easy ways to prepare yourself and the kids. Check out our basic tips for boating with kids and you’ll be ready for adventures together!
(If you’re worried about where to find a boat, take a deep breath. I’ve got help in that area too! Just check out the bottom of this post!)
1. Get them comfortable with lifejackets.
As a mom, safety is my biggest concern. My kids both have their own lifejackets that they’re comfortable wearing. If your kids don’t have their own or aren’t as comfortable, take the time before you go boating to help them get used to wearing them.
They need to wear lifejackets the entire time they’re on the boat or doing boating activities so doing the prep work to make sure they’re comfortable is one key to a smooth and successful trip!
2. Learn the rules together.
My kids love learning about new things so one of the best ways to prepare for boating with kids is to learn about it together!
Before you hit the water, sit down together and learn all about the rules of taking a boat out on the water. Learn about the boat you’ll be on and learn about the lake or body of water you’ll be exploring. It’s a great way to spend time together too!
Learning about things like the boat’s radio is also something the kids love.
3. Pack a Boating with Kids Bag
Just like you pack a bag for the pool, don’t hesitate to pack a bag for on the boat!
The best way to make sure you have a great experience boating with your kids is to come prepared! That seems to be the general thing life teaches me about parenting — try to be prepared!
Some of the things I like to take onboard with me include:
- Sunscreen, sunscreen and more sunscreen (I usually dress the kids in swim gear with rashguards under their lifejackets for sun protection)
- Hats and sunglasses
- Something for motion sickness (if your kids have issues with this)
- Lots of towels (when the boat is moving and kids are wet, they get cold quickly no matter how warm it is out!)
- A few sets of extra clothes
- Bring snacks that don’t need to be refrigerated and that don’t melt
- Things for them to do (that don’t roll too much or have to be tracked down — playdough is my go-to for this!)
It’s really just like packing for any other adventure with young kids!
If you do these few simple things, you’ll be prepared to hit the water! And who knows what amazing things you might see and do together!
How to Find a Boat & Learn More About Boating
As a mom, I think a lot about things like keeping my kids safe and entertained. But when it comes to boating with kids, there is the other side of planning — the boating side!
So if you’re not sure where to start, have no fear! Discover Boating has made it easy for us to figure it out! The website is packed full of great boating resources!
I live near Lake Conroe and also have a lot of boat rental opportunities in my general area, so it’s pretty easy to track down a boat even though we don’t own our own! We can get a fishing boat for the day or if we’re feeling more adventurous, we can even try out some personal watercraft.
I love floating along with my family watching all of the people doing different watersports like tubing, wakeboarding, and waterskiing but I haven’t gotten quite that brave yet! I could probably handle tubing and I’m pretty sure my kids will have me out there eventually!
And in case you’re wondering, yes even Grambo hits the lake with us! So it’s definitely fun for the whole family!
So if you’re ready to go boating this summer, let DiscoverBoating.com be your guide! They have some amazing resources including:
- Go Boating Today to help you find local boat rentals and more
- Boat Selector tool in case you’re thinking of getting your own boat
- Youth Boating Programs information
- Tons of videos to learn more about boating and the boating lifestyle!
So be sure to visit the website and start planning your boating adventure this summer! You can make it part of your next vacation or plan a staycation around the water! Start making those memories that will stick with your and your kids for life!
For more fun ways to stay cool this summer while on land, check out some of our favorite sprinkler games for kids!